Yellen eyes innovation to battle misuse of crypto, narrow digital gaps




By Andrea Shalal and David Lawder


WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. Treasury Secretary on Wednesday warned about an “explosion of risk” from digital markets, including the misuse of cryptocurrencies, but said new financial technologies could also help fight crime and reduce inequality.



In remarks to a financial sector innovation roundtable, Yellen said such technologies could be used to stem the flow of dark money from organized crime and fight back against hackers, but also to reduce digital gaps in the United States.


She said passage of the Anti-Money Laundering Act in December would allow the Treasury Department to rework a framework for combating illicit finance that has been largely unchanged since the 1970s.


“The update couldn’t have come at a better time,” Yellen told policymakers, regulators and private sector experts. “We’re living amidst an explosion of risk related to fraud, money laundering, terrorist financing, and data privacy.”


The COVID-19 pandemic had triggered more – and more sophisticated – cyberattacks aimed at hospitals, schools, banks, and the government itself, she said.


Cryptocurrencies and virtual assets offered promise, but they had also been used to launder the profits of online drug traffickers and to finance terrorism.


Innovation in the sector could help address these problems while giving millions of people access to the financial system, she said.


Yellen, who has promised to prioritize fighting inequality and disparities, said the pandemic had exposed huge problems, including the dearth of broadband access in many areas of the country.


She said responsible and equitable innovation could make a big difference.


“Innovation should not just be a shield to protect against bad actors. Innovation should also be a ladder to help more people climb to a higher quality of life,” she said.


 


(Reporting by David Lawder and Andrea Shalal; Editing by Sam Holmes and Grant McCool)

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

Dear Reader,

Business Standard has always strived hard to provide up-to-date information and commentary on developments that are of interest to you and have wider political and economic implications for the country and the world. Your encouragement and constant feedback on how to improve our offering have only made our resolve and commitment to these ideals stronger. Even during these difficult times arising out of Covid-19, we continue to remain committed to keeping you informed and updated with credible news, authoritative views and incisive commentary on topical issues of relevance.

We, however, have a request.

As we battle the economic impact of the pandemic, we need your support even more, so that we can continue to offer you more quality content. Our subscription model has seen an encouraging response from many of you, who have subscribed to our online content. More subscription to our online content can only help us achieve the goals of offering you even better and more relevant content. We believe in free, fair and credible journalism. Your support through more subscriptions can help us practise the journalism to which we are committed.

Support quality journalism and subscribe to Business Standard.

Digital Editor





Source link